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Visitors’ Book


Good luck with your project to find out more about the history of your house. Our 'Index of Places in Badsey and Aldington' is a good place to start. This tells me your house has the date 1922 on the front which makes it too recent to appear on any of the published censuses. But there are several other records that may help.

The electoral register for 1924 shows 'SEARS, Frederick. Land (Abode - "Hollycroft," Aldington). Badsey'. I think this means that Frederick Sears was allowed to vote because he owned land in Badsey and his home address was Hollycroft. I am fairly sure this is your house - the boundaries between Badsey and Aldington keep changing over the years. More interesting, from the place index, you will also find a letter written in 1933 by 11 year old Ronald Sears who was living at Hollycroft. It describes in some detail life in a market gardening family.

I cannot tell you if the Sears family were the first owners of Hollycroft but it seems likely. You can find more about that family by going to our name index. I strongly suggest you get hold of the deeds of your house which should give lots of clues about its history. Sometimes solicitors or building societies hang on to the deeds but they should give you photocopies.

We would like to include more house histories on the Badsey website. When you have finished your searches, do consider writing a short article about it for us.

Sarah Evans - 5th February 2002 - 0:00

Hello, I wonder if you could possibly help me at all. I am looking for a web page that gives all the info about my grandfather. His name was John Keen, he had three daughters named Patricia, Elizabeth and Jaqueline and a son named Deryk Hartwell of the company Spiers and Hartwell. I am sorry that this is not much info but have been told about a web page giving the history of his life, but cannot find it anywhere. I would really appreciate any help you can give me .Some of my relatives still live in Badsey.    

Many thanks, Sarah Evans

Maureen Spinks - 5th February 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Sarah Evans

Thank you for your e-mail.  You don't give any indication of dates, so it's a little difficult to tell which era you are interested in.  If you have a look at the Badsey website,, and click on the alphabetical index, you will see that there are a very large number of Keens and Hartwells.  However, my transcribing of parish records basically stops 100 years ago because of Data Protection of living persons.  I assume that the people you are talking about were born some time in the 20th century.  If you are able to work backwards from yourself, back to your grandparents/great-grandparents, I may then be able to point you in the direction of discovering your family history going back over several centuries.  

Have you looked at the section on called "Children's letters describing market gardening life in 1933"?  Five children by the name of Keen (there were quite a number of Keens living in the village then) wrote letters, including an 11-year-old John Keen.  Is that by any chance your John Keen?

Hilary Sharp - 25th January 2002 - 0:00

Many thanks for such a wonderful web site. I am so grateful to you for all your research as I have found many wonderful things which have assisted my own research.

I am researching my family which consists mainly of Jelfs/Cranes/Perkins/Hartwells/Halls. I have gone back to 1600s and if anyone would like to swap records or view my findings, I would be happy to share the records.

Amongst the letters from the children on the site is a letter from my great aunt Hilary who still lives in Norton. What handwriting for a 9 year old! Her husband Sid Jobson sadly died a couple of years ago and was a bell ringer. A lovely, gentle man.

I found the pictures of the Jelfs family on your site today - wonderful to think that they are linked with my family although I have to confirm where they join in to our tree. I am going to show Hilary Cranes letter as a 9 year old to her sister (my grandmother) who is now 93 - she will be amazed.

Regards, Hilary Sharp, Reading, England

Many thanks for your kind comments about the Badsey website.  I have transcribed all the parish records for Badsey (the 1901 census has just gone up on the web), and I have started compiling a dossier on each family to increase my understanding of how everyone fits in.  I am sending you my jottings on the families which are of interest to you.  I am intrigued to know your line of descent and where you fit into the picture.  I have deliberately stopped transcriptions at the beginning of the 20th century because of being careful about Data Protection of living persons, but it would be good to know how you fit in.

Brian Jennings - 20th January 2002 - 0:00

Reading Will Dallimore's article about Asum grammar, I have been trying to remember the Asum dialect. Here are a few phrases you can check with other natives.

Lat ee bee - Of course he is.
Lat ee yunt - Of course he's not.
How bist? - How are you? (note the German 2nd person sing)
How bist thee then? - How are you? (if you haven't met for some time)
Well, oi gutta ell! - Really! ( well I'll go to hell)
Well, Oi gutta anovur! - I'll go to Hanover (how surprising!) (another German connection?)
Oi Oi then. - Cheerio.
Wur hast thee bin? - Where have you been?
Oi bin t'Asum fust then atur t' Bret. - I went first to Evesham then afterwards to Bretforton.
Hast bin t'Uffenum? - Have you been to Offenham?
I hant bin thur. Thee nows oi hant. - I haven't been there. You know I haven't.
It yun aff cold yunnit? - It's really cold isn't it?
Oi gutta ell if it yunt. - I'll go to hell if it's not.
Oi spec usullbee pullin unyuns this marning. - I expect we'll be pulling onions this morning.

Yours, Brian Jennings, Harare, Zimbabwe

Nigel Bell - 15th January 2002 - 0:00

What a fantastic website, I do admire the effort that must have gone into producing such a high quality, but also very user friendly site.

I have located many of my relatives who attended Badsey school and also appeared in many of your record connections (census etc.). My great great grandfather and many of his relatives appear in these records and I also pleased to tell you that my niece's grand children are currently at your school.I have notified them and several other relatives still living in Badsey and the surrounding area, of your site and highly recommend them to visit it.

Having left the area many years ago, as I have been living in Plymouth for nearly 30 years, the article on the 'asum' accent was really inspiring. I have nieces and their families still in the area, and they don't think that they have a dialect. It is not as well known as the Brummy or Newcastle accents, but it is just as strong amongst the traditional local people.

Thank you once again for such a great website, I will continue to recommend you, and wish you the best of luck for future projects.

Bye for now, Nigel Bell, Plymouth

Maureen Spinks - 10th January 2002 - 0:00

In reply to by Michelle

Delighted to hear that you have found our website useful.  I have also transcribed some of the records for the neighbouring parish of Wickhamford, but these do not appear on the Badsey website.  You will be interested in the following information from Wickhamford baptismal records:

17 Jun 1798    George, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
20 Oct 1799    Edward, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
16 Sep 1802    William, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
27 Jan 1805    Thomas, son of Thomas and Alice Halford
31 May 1807    Hannah, daughter of Thomas and Alice Halford

The Halfords may well have moved to Badsey soon after Hannah's birth.  You will see that some of Hannah's Halford relations appear in the census returns, and also in the burial records, that Thomas Halford, your gggg-grandfather, died in 1851, aged 82.  

If anyone shares an ancestor with Michelle, please contact her.

Andy Davis - 5th January 2002 - 0:00

Hi, I'm not from Badsey, (closer to Bardsey!) nor have I ever heard of it before but I found your lovely site whilst looking for my mothers family name (Daffon) on the net.

Searching the People Index, I noticed that all of the Daffons (and similar names) were listed pre-1784, but read a letter from a visitor reminiscing about a schoolmate Dafforne in the 1950's. Where did they go? When did they return?

My own family history relates that the family line fled from France during the Revolution (1789?) as there was an Ironmaster (i.e.richer than average, hence in danger of a topping) and seemed to settle around Birmingham/ Notts/Coventry area, where some still remain. I would be intrigued to find that there may be a link between these families.

Does anyone have any info relating to these families, specifically the apparent disappearance in the late 18th century? Any help would be appreciated.

Regards, Andy Davis, Aberystwyth, Wales

Arnella Barris - 1st December 2001 - 0:00

I am writing from Pennsylvania , USA and don't know if you can help me or not but it is worth a try.

I saw the names of JAMES and SARAH MAPSTONE that were on The Wooden Plaque in St. James Church. I am very interesed in the MAPSTONE name because a JAMES MAPSTONE was my great grandfather and all I know of him is that he came from England. This couple could be his parents or a relative.

My James Mapstone was born Dec.5,1842 came to the USA 1873 (age31yrs) married Margaret Phillips June 7,1876 and died Sept.26,1916 (age74yrs).  

Sincerely, Arnella Barris, Pennsylvania, USA

Besides the Mapstones in our name index, there is a Sarah Mapstone, buried at Badsey on the 3 February 1933. She was aged 75 years, and stated to be from Woodford House, Chew Stoke, Avon. This is just south of Bristol. This is the only other Mapstone mentioned in the burial registers after 1909.

I was intrigued to receive your e-mail. From looking at the Badsey records, here is what I have deduced:

  • James and Sarah Mapstone moved to Bowers Hill Farm, Badsey in 1894 (when Ellen and Jessie enrolled at Badsey School in April 1894); prior to that they had lived in Studley.
  • James and Sarah seemed to have 3 children: Ellen (born 25 Jan 1883), Jessie (born 2 Aug 1885) and Sarah Ann (bap Aug 1895).
  • James Mapstone was buried on 30 Mar 1895, aged 51.
  • Sarah Mapstone and her children may well have left the area shortly after the incident, as Jessie Mapstone was withdrawn from Badsey School on 18th October 1895.
  • But then comes the sad part. James Mapstone was killed in an incident at Bowers Hill Farm in March 1895, and a man named Dawson was convicted of his manslaughter. There is a long article about the case at Worcester in "The Evesham Journal" on 29th June 1895. I stumbled on it by chance a couple of years ago. I have a poor copy of the article which I made then.
  • On looking at the IGI, I see there are a couple of James Mapstones born in the 1840s in Somerset.

One intriguing aspect is that of the monumental inscription dated 1950. One assumes the Mapstones had only a very brief sojourn in Badsey, so why do their names appear on a wooden plaque over 50 years later? I guess if we look in things like Churchwardens' Records at Worcester Record Office, this may give us a clue. When I next go to the Record Office, I will try and check it out.

In March 2002 we were contacted by Stan Mapstone of Runcorn, Cheshire who runs the Mapstone, Mabstone and Mapston One Name Study. He tells us James Mapstone was born 1st. December 1842, in Wookey, Somerset, and was buried 30th March 1895, in Badsey. He had four children, the last one being born four months after his death. Stan gave us this copy of a newspaper report, on the inquest into his death -

Allegations Against A Bailiff.
An adjourned Inquest was held on Tuesday, on the body of James Mapstone, a farmer, living at Badsey, near Evesham. The evidence showed that the deceased had had dealings with money-lenders, who sent a bailiff named Dawson, of Bristol, to take possession of his goods, and several witnesses stated that they saw this man strike Mapstone with a heavy stick. There was a severe wound on the deceased's head, and one of his fingers was also seriously injured, the nail being almost torn off. Dr. Golpin testified to death being due to lockjaw, the result of the injury to the finger. Dawson denied striking Mapstone at all, and said the injury to the finger was caused by the deceased getting his hand entangled in the harness of a horse he was holding. After a very long hearing the jury returned a verdict of "Manslaughter" against Dawson, who was thereupon committed for trial at the Worcester Assizes on the coroner's warrant.

Stan is keen to know more about this case.

See also the article Manslaughter at Badsey.

Valerie Harman - 10th October 2001 - 0:00

I have just discovered the wonderful web site for Badsey and must congratulate all those who have put so much time and effort into it.

I note that you are looking for old photos and I have two of Badsey School. I think they probably date from around the early 1900's. They came to me from my uncle William Walters of Wickhamford and I think that probably his father and uncle are on them.  From your index I discovered that Robert William Walters started at Badsey School 3/7/1894 aged 4 and his brother Harry started 19/3/1894 aged 7. The one photo has a child holding a notice which says 'Board School, Badsey. Group 7' and the other one just 'No.4'.

I have shown the photos to my father Fred Mason aged 91, who was born at Wickhamford and still lives there, who also attended Badsey School, but unfortunately he has been unable to identify any of the children. They are of a generation before him. He does however have an excellent memory of times past in around Badsey and Wickhamford often recalls his school days at Badsey School. If you are looking for a few interesting anecdotes he could probably supply you with some. He well remembers seeing the German POW's working on the land whilst walking to and from Badsey School.  Also the day Mrs Mason, a school teacher at Badsey, was told that her son had been killed in the war. Anyway if the photos are of any use please contact me.  

Yours sincerely Valerie Harman, Badsey

Sarah Bent - 1st October 2001 - 0:00

I see that you are going to be producing another guide to Badsey & Aldington.  I know Bowers Hill is very small but I feel it is worthy of inclusion particularly in light of elderly residents that have some good stories to tell about the area.

I run a B&B business and have recently been trying to find out the history of Bowers Hill.  It is a mystery what two little stone cottages, built around the mid-1750s, were doing on the plot of Bowers Hill House and Farm in the middle of nowhere.  We uncovered a large bread oven when doing some renovation work about 6 years?  Did this oven just feed the family or was it the local bakery?  We are on a lay-line - does this have a significance?  Perhaps there are people in the area who may know the answer to these questions?  I wanted to put some of this information on my web-site to satisfy the curiosity we get when guests come here to stay.  

My mother-in-law talks of the lady who was buried on the side of the road which is known locally as Francis's grave but does not appear on any map.  She apparently committed suicide and suicides were not allowed to be buried in consecrated ground!  Mmmm ... I also wanted to know about Allen Barn where there is some ghost or other reputedly.

Regards, Sarah Bent, Bowers Hill Farm, Worcestershire

Richard Phillips - 1st October 2001 - 0:00

In reply to by Sarah Bent

Some fascinating questions - can anyone help? It would be appreciated if you reply both to Sarah and and to Bowers Hill Farm is about two miles from Badsey on the Willersey Road. Sarah & Martin Bent offer Bed & Breakfast in a large Victorian farmhouse - see details on their website

Brian Jennings - 15th September 2001 - 0:00

I hope you had a successful public meeting on the 7 September about the new edition of 'A Brief history of Badsey & Aldington' - you see I have been to the website which is very interesting and well laid out.

My father was Station Master at Littleton & Badsey - quite a thriving station during the market gardening era.   I will see if I have anything of interest from the past and be in touch.  

Pat Goldstraw and Roger Savory stayed with us some 3 years ago. We were all born in Brewer's Lane!    We have been thinking of Roger as he lives in New Jersey and not far from the dreadful events in Manhattan.  He sent a message recently asking if we were OK in Zimbabwe!!  

Regards, Brian Jennings, Harare, Zimbabwe

Charles Henry Dudley - 1st August 2001 - 0:00

I think you have a beautiful and well organized web site. It has a lot of interesting information and a well layed out genealogy page. It must of been a labor of love for all involved in creating this site. Congratulations on a job well done. I know if I ever get to come to England, Badsey will be on the top of my list of places to visit.

Charles Henry Dudley, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

Lucy Sweeting - 10th July 2001 - 0:00

Congrats on your wonderful website. As a daughter of the Knights of Badsey I was thrilled to discover my ancestors on-line. I am the youngest daughter of Valentine Sydney born 1895 who died in North Wales on 25 Jan 1985. Some years ago when visiting Worcester my husband and I researched my family at the Shire Hall going back to Joseph Knight of Aldington who married Eleanor. I notice in your Births records you have two entries for children born to Eliza widow of Arthur Richard, born Oct 1830, died 1862 in an accident . There is no father listed for these children - Arthur Edward and Clara. I can tell you that the father of these two was Malachi, Arthur's elder brother born 1828, died 1891.

We were most interested to read the excerpts in the Parish Magazine about my late father Valentine Sydney during WW1. He served in the 9th Worcs Regt and was in Mesopotamia. He stayed there after the war training local fire services in Basra after he had risen to the rank of Company Sergeant Major returning to UK in 1919/20. After his marriage in 1923 the family lived in the village of Cropthorne until moving to North Wales in 1947. I and my two sisters all live in North Wales. I have a few artefacts handed down from my father - a tambourine which according to family legend was made by Thomas Knight Born Jun 1765 , married Ann Simpson 1791 and a clip of bullets which saved my father's life as they were in his ammo pouch and deflected a Turkish sniper's bullet (the Parish mag mentions him being wounded and we think this must have been the occasion) - we have a photo of the dented clip of bullets should you be interested.

Lucy Sweeting (Nee Knight), Pwllheli, Gwynedd, Wales

It was lovely to hear from a descendant of a Knight from Badsey. It is a shame that you do not live closer to Badsey as the 100th Badsey Flower Show is taking place this afternoon. I am helping on a Local History/Badsey website stall, and one of the main things there will be a "Knights of Badsey Family Tree". It is 14 feet long! Here is Maureen's article about the Knight family.


John Cole - 1st July 2001 - 0:00

This is John Cole saying hi from the other side of the globe. As some of you might know I am in Japan working as a volunteer. I have just visited the webite, it very good. It makes me feel a lot closer to home. I look forward to hearing from some of you. I have started writing a book on my time here you can visit it at the following address: You can also pick up my newsletters at this address.

Love and Best Wishes to all John Cole (From Bretforton Road)

Editor - 1st June 2001 - 0:00

The name index on the Badsey website includes about 236 entries for the surname Pidgeon and variants like Pegyn, Pigeon, Pigin etc. We had this interesting email from the Ian Pidgeon who runs the One Name Study for the Pigeon surname.

...Those with the surname Pigin or Piggin... pronounce their surname with a hard G (as PIG - IN) and so today this is not considered a variation of Pidgeon/Pigeon (with a soft G sound). But looking through the alphabetical list of Badsey and seeing so many Pigins and Pigeons makes one think again, especially as all 86 Pigin variations occur in the 16th century, with only 14 Pigeons. All the remaining Pigeon/Pidgeon variations occur later. Was this a spelling change, or did all the Pigins move away from the village?

My only disappointment is that there is no Henry, born 1755. But then I still think he most likely came from Shropshire (to Stockport, where he married in 1792 and founded the Stockport Pidgeon dynasty). Once again, many thanks for thinking of us genealogists. Congratulations on what at first sight appears to be a very interesting and well-organised web-site.

Regards, Ian Pidgeon, St Albans, England.

Can anyone help Ian on this question? To find out what other surnames have been common in Badsey see Top 200 surnames in Badsey.

Mike James - 1st May 2001 - 0:00

Thank you so much for notifying me about the Badsey web site. I think it is one of the best sites I have visited and have already recommended it to fellow researchers of the locality. I will be revisiting the site on a regular basis.

I was especially thrilled to see two of my uncles (who were married to my mother's sisters) as members of the Badsey School photograph - Joe Plant and Bill Walters.

Another of my mothers sisters Mrs Phyllis Knight still lives in Badsey although at present she is in hospital after suffering a stroke. Once again thank you.

Regards Mike James, New Zealand.

Jo Allen - 20th April 2001 - 0:00

Just a note to say thank you for producing such a wonderful site. I've just spent about an hour browsing your site and picking up some useful information for my family history, my 2 x great-grand parents moved to Badsey c.1927 from Sibford Ferris, Oxon. I have visited Badsey myself, it was around eight years ago but your site has inspired me to come again! Thanks so much

Jo Allen, Watford, Hertfordshire.

Elizabeth Newman - 10th April 2001 - 0:00

While living in Cleeve Prior near to Badsey, I transcribed the Parish Records, Registers, Census Returns, Monumental Inscriptions, Wills and Inventories etc from the 16th Century onwards. I am happy to supply copies of any of this information to family historians at no charge. Please email me at or through the Worcestershire Genuki site Web Site Think your site is excellent and will most appreciated by family history researches across the globe.

Elizabeth Newman, Kington Herefordshire.

Tim Harrison - 1st April 2001 - 0:00

I was delighted to come across your excellent web site all about the village where I went to school in the late 50's - early 60's.  It brought back a lot of pleasant memories. Mr.Harvey was the Headmaster, and some of the teachers I remember were Mrs.Williams, Mr.Morton, Mrs.Gorin, Mrs.Smith, Mrs.Peat. A few names from my class came back, David Stewart, John Hewlett, Richard Austin, Martin Bent, Nigel Beasley, Willie Daffurn, Jimmy Smith, Mary Braby, Gillian Sutton, Peter Hall, Philip Sutton, Stephen Wheatley, and my good mate and fellow trainspotter Roger Hartwell. (we spent may hours at Littleton & Badsey crossing watching the mighty GWR expresses thunder by!!)     I lived in Wickhamford, and bussed to school every day. I'm glad to see that the flower show is still going, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that the blacksmiths is still there and working. If anyone remembers me please get in touch.  

Tim Harrison, Plymouth, Devon.

Nic - 15th March 2001 - 0:00

I am seeking information on prisoners of war (POW) that were billeted at Badsey Manor for a history project. It appears the camp was designated as a 'Working Camp' which means any POWs billeted in Badsey were employed on construction projects rather than agricultural work. This could have ranged from clearing land, to building roads, working in quarries, etc. Do you know of any projects that were constructed at this time in the area?

I live in Derby and cannot get to every site I hear of (900 to date) so I rely on help from locals. I set the Project up some seven years ago and called it the POWIC - an acronym for 'Prisoner of War Internment Camp'.

Nic, POWIC Project, Derby

Shirley Sears Palmer - 1st March 2001 - 0:00

My great-grandfather William Edgington was born in Badsey 6 June 1827 and married Eliza Cook who was born in Badsey 22 Aug 1830. Their daughter Felicia born Feb 1854 somewhere in England and she married David Sears who was christened 17 Feb 1850 in Wickhamford. They were married in Geauga County, Ohio. I would like to know if there are any descendants still in the area. I loved seeing the pictures of the area, I think this is a great website. I hope to visit your area in a year or two.

Shirley Sears Palmer, Willoughby Hills, Ohio, USA

Drogo Hawkins - 1st March 2001 - 0:00

I live in Aldington and like your website but I was disappointed that there was not more about us. Aldington may be smaller than Badsey but it is still a substantial village with lots of interesting history.

Drogo Hawkins, Aldington, Worcestershire

You will find Aldington on the street map and the nineteenth century census pages. Perhaps somebody in Aldington could write something for us? There is no shortage of webspace and we would be delighted to see more.

Netty Walker - 1st February 2001 - 0:00

I've just had a browse through your website which I must say is very good. It's clearly laid out, informative and basically works well. I moved to Badsey last April so am still finding my feet to an extent. I'm originally from County Durham but came here via Nottingham and London. I love the area and think I'll be very happy here. I've found everyone I've met very welcoming and friendly and I really love the fact that it's a living/working village and hasn't suffered the demise of becoming a dormitory.  I've taken up a part time course at Pershore College as my self employment allows the time and the whole area has introduced me to so many other opportunities that I would never been able to consider in London.

It would be really interesting to see some sort of diary on the site for local events, parish meetings and anything else that's going on. As an outsider it's sometimes a little difficult to see where you might get involved in village life. Are there any other clubs/ societies in the village?

Kind regards Netty Walker

David Geapin - 15th January 2001 - 0:00

I lived in Badsey in the 70's and reading your page has bought back many happy memories. I would like to hear from anyone who may remember my self and family

Thanks David Geapin, now living near Stratford on Avon

Philip Greener - 1st December 2000 - 0:00

Your website is well put together. I used to live at 3 School Lane in the 1970s. I would really like to know if the enormous tree in the churchyard is still there?

I remember the village before its expansion. I left as they were ripping the orchard by the brook out. I really would like to know if that tree is still there. Some drunks planted a flag at the top on the Queens Jubilee.

Thank you Philip Greener aka Wellard A Obbit

Will Dallimore writes: I think the tree was the giant wellingtonia that stood in the grounds of the house next to the church. It was taller than the church and was removed only a few years ago when it became dangerous. There are many local stories of men who have climbed the tree over the years... If you look at Michael Barnard's drawing you will see the tree next to the church. The orchard which was being removed was possibly for the new houses at the lower end of Seward Road.

Here is a History of Badsey's Wellingtonia Tree.

Sue & Roy Edlin - 25th November 2000 - 0:00

Our December Edition of Family History Monthly gave your site an excellent write-up.  We fully endorse their findings. What a lot of work you must all have put in to achieve such spectacular results.

The best of luck, Sue & Roy Edlin, Tewkwsbury